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My hands and legs are numb with a sharp pain in my shoulders. Does it mean I have frozen shoulder





Question >

I am a housewife in my 50s. Because of the pain in the shoulders and numbness in arms and hands, it is difficult to write letters and to press buttons on the remote control. Based on a self-diagnosis of frozen shoulder, my symptoms do not seem to be frozen shoulder, since there is no specific pain while wrenching my arm to the back. I am wondering if the symptoms are due to stress or cervical disc herniation.

Answer >

Considering the pain in the shoulders and the numbness in arms and hands, it is likely to be a cervical disc herniation. But without proper screening, it is hard to diagnose. If the sore pain is in the shoulders, the disease may be accompanied by cervical disc herniation or frozen shoulder or may be subacromial bursitis or shoulder impingement syndrome.

The subacromial bursitis is a disease of inflammation underneath the triangular muscle in the shoulder and the symptoms are quite similar to that of the frozen shoulder. Biceps brachii tendinitis or shoulder impingement syndrome is characterized by a severe pain when lifting the hands up and raising them, while having the hands behind your back does not cause much pain. The patient's symptoms may correspond to them. Of course, it may be caused by simple shoulder stiffness due to stress or overwork. 

Thus, the diagnosis can vary. So we recommend you visit a specialist and determine the exact cause of the pain. Despite similar symptoms, the treatment of pain varies depending on the cause. For example, if the condition is simple shoulder stiffness or frozen shoulder, exercises will help relieve the pain. But if it is cervical disc herniation, subacromial bursitis or biceps brachii tendinitis, exercises may worsen the symptoms.

Among them, the most serious case is cervical disc herniation accompanied by frozen shoulder. In this case, both correct diagnosis and treatment are difficult to attain. Thus, self-diagnosis that leads to neglect frozen shoulder is very dangerous.

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